So who is involved in the design for Pastelle?
We’re going to have several designers do things under the brand. Adidas, NIGO® [from A Bathing Ape]Jonah [Bevacqua] from LRG. They will find stuff, design stuff. I think that was my first love before I even really wanted to be a rapper. I really thought I was going to become a designer. Like, in fourth grade, I was designing clothes.
Did you just choose your favorite people to do the line? And were they open as soon as you reached out?
All except NIGO®.
It’s surprising that he gets involved.
Well, I wouldn’t put it that way. But there will be exclusive pieces. It doesn’t do the whole line. But you know how he made sunglasses with Pharrell? We just want it to be open, for different celebrity designers to come in and design under the brand.
In an interview a few years ago, you said you didn’t like people thinking of you as a fashion icon. Do you still feel this way?
It was probably just a misquote in the interview. That’s what journalists do professionally, aside from typing: misquotes. When they go to school, the teachers say, “Make sure you misquote and paraphrase the artist who speaks in spectra, who speaks in color.” The only way to make it fit on the page is to turn what it says into black and white. So take specific lines out of her sentence so she means exactly what you want her to say! My thing is, to hell with your 4,000 words. Make my shit 4,050 words and quote it and quote it right. It happens even with the nicest journalists, even with people who have no malicious intent. It’s one of the reasons I rap in the first place. I wanted to get my message across exactly the way I wanted to say it. I spent so much time articulating my sentences, especially when I made these quotes. If I had all my quotes, I could make a book.
You have a strange love/hate relationship with the press. Do you think that even though you say you were misquoted, they still helped you by praising and loving you University dropout?
They were real after the fact with The stall. I just had to mature. I’m an artist. I was a starving artist. I was someone no one believed in. Here’s your quote here: “Success is humbling because now I don’t have to tell anyone how good I am. Everyone can see it.
Does it make you feel humble, or just make you look humble?
Well, I think I have a lot of internal conflict with that because it’s a Gemini’s nature to try to make people happy. So I guess that’s where I get my split personalities from. What we do is if we have an issue, we’ll gauge the response – if we bring up something, half the people will respond to it before we say something. We really try to think before we speak, and if it feels like a lull, it’ll be like, “Well, why aren’t you talking?” when, really, I’m trying to figure it all out in my head. And then people say, “Why are you acting weird? Why are you acting like this? So I have a complex that I try to fight to try to make people happy. Just today on the train this guy was talking to me – now beware, people come up to me all the time trying to ask me for advice on how to do it, so I’ll remember that. He said, “What are you doing here?” And I said I had a show. He said, “Yo, dog, keep doing your thing.” And I said, “Fo’ sho’, man. I’m going to try. And then he was like, “Don’t say try, don’t say try.” And I said, “Wait a second, dog, I’m doing this. That’s what I do. I say I’ll try to put you at ease. Just to make people walk away saying, “Damn, Kanye’s a really nice guy.” For some reason, every time I speak directly, people feel so uncomfortable. The thing is, if you want the realest of me, then it’ll be like, [excitedly] “Yeah, I did that”, and shouting all the time and celebrating all the time because it’s so good. Every day is my birthday. What are you waiting for? It’s like walking a day in my shoes and trying not to spare anyone. What do you want from me? So now what I’m doing is highlighting what I’ve always talked about: false modesty. I get so fake. I become exactly what I tried to fight against.